State Archives of Florida: Collection N2009-10, Box 01, Folder 1
Rainbow Springs, "Florida's most rapidly growing attraction," sale presentation package, 1954
This collection consists of a presentation package describing the operations and physical and financial condition of Rainbow Springs as of March 1954. The package includes historical background information, a description of the facilities, past and projected income from the facilities, promotional brochures, and photographs. It was compiled by Kenneth S. Keyes, Chairman of The Keyes Company Realtors, and addressed to S.V. McKinney, a Cedar Key banker, as part of an effort to find a buyer for the business. Rainbow Springs State Park had its origins as a 1930s tourist attraction which over time featured a lodge and cottages, gift shop, and "submarine boats" allowing passengers an underwater view of the springs through portholes in the side. Rainbow Springs was never as successful as its competitors Silver Springs, Weeki Wachee, and Homosassa Springs, but in 1967, new owner Walter Beinke aimed to make it into a major attraction. Soon after, Rainbow Springs boasted a new aviary, animal shows, paddlewheel riverboat, monorail, and other new features. With the development of Disney World and other Orlando area attractions, Rainbow springs attracted fewer customers and finally closed in 1973. Local citizens fought efforts to develop the area until the State of Florida bought the park in 1990. By 1992, with the assistance of local citizen volunteers, Rainbow Springs State Park reopened on weekends and, in 1995, was once again open daily.